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Dismissal of Case Against Insurer for Uninsured Motorist Benefits

August 29, 2009

Fred Valz┬ádefended an insurer who had issued a policy of auto liability insurance and an excess liability policy. The insurer was served with a lawsuit as a purported uninsured motorist carrier. The excess insurance policy, issued in North Carolina, had liability limits of $1 Million but did not provide uninsured motorist benefits. The insurer tendered the limits under the liability policy but failed to timely respond to certain Requests for Admissions seeking affirmation of coverage for uninsured motorist benefits under the excess policy and such requests were deemed admitted. Additionally, the named defendant failed to answer and default judgment was entered against him in the amount of $854,727.04. Fred and Erica moved to set aside the admissions and Plaintiff moved to impose sanctions against the insurer for failure to respond to discovery. After extensive briefings and oral argument, the court granted the insurer’s Motion to Set Aside Admissions and denied the Motion for Sanctions. Because the admissions were withdrawn, the Plaintiff could not obtain any further recovery under the policy, and he dismissed his claims against the insurer.

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